Hi and I'm brand new and I really hope you can help me.
Here is my conundrum. I may have really messed up by using a leather dressing (I chose it because it said it was non-darkening)…
Ok, so, from the beginning.
I inherited this beautiful leather chair from my father that he’s had since I can remember. It’s at least 40/45 years old and may have been purchased in Chile where we lived from about 1969 to ’73:
My dad attached the seat with sailing line. I've since replaced them. You can see them below and I'd like to age those to match the now much browner chair.
It retained that gorgeous milky brightness all these years, but there were some stains I wanted to deal with. Here are a few:
stain on backrest, unknown origin.
close up of the seat, also pretty light staining.
closeup of one of the arms of the chair. cracky and spotty.
This is the rear panel of the backrest, bigger splashing here and once I worked on it with that Lexol "non-darkening" dressing, it brought out rings which must be water from a glass sitting on it... you can see that below.
After a lot of reading all over the internet, I decided this product made with Neatsfoot oil and claiming to be non-darkening would be safe to use (Lexol).
While I was waiting for that to arrive, I tested some DIY solutions I found on the internet (I know, I know…) on the underside of the seat and was alarmed at the instant degradation of the surface.
I don't know if spots like this are reparable without your sculpting/spackling product.
I got the dressing, tested it and still wasn’t sure what to do when my 16 year old son, who also loves the chair, came in all sweaty from a bike ride and sat right down on it. Next time I looked at the chair I found this:
Attachment 5451Attachment 5452
Pictures #7 & #8
The darker color on the leather overall is just mainly due to the lighting--at least at the top of the back you can see where it isn't affected by the sweat--that's just darker due to bulb lighting at night. His shirt has a rubbery kind of printing on the back, that’s why it has that batik-like printing effect. So that’s sweat. No idea at all what the other older stains would have been. In any case, the fact that by the next morning the sweat stains seemed to have gotten worse, making kind of black-looking pits where it had soaked in on the back and seat made me feel like I had to do SOMEthing rather than just keep on researching.
So I went for it with baby wipes (“natural, unscented” another internet suggestions which… I know, I know…) and the Lexol non-darkening dressing.
It didn’t remove the marks from the tee-shirt or really any of the old stains, but it definitely mellowed the contrast on the lettering and seems to have brought up the pitting to some degree. I’m quite sad that I’ve lost that glossy pale surface and I was also sad to see that lots of cracks seem to have appeared (it must be just bringing them out, but still)…
So here is the chair as it is now after my misguided efforts.
Finally I found the similar looking chairs you consulted on here on this forum and read everything here that I could. I bought the Vachetta Browning Removal kit and also a bottle of Acidifier 2.0 based on what I read here.
So I haven’t done anything further to the chair. I received the kit but I figured I’d better wait to hear what the doctor recommends. I do realize that a lot of that cracking and stuff will not be healable without basically spackling it. I'm wondering how I might go about doing what I can to make this leather healthy again.
Thank you so much!!
Numbered the pictures... Thanks again!!